Assertive behaviors help people to express their feelings, explain their needs, and set limits when they don’t want to do something. Learning how to be assertive can be very helpful in relationships. When people are able to be assertive, they tend to develop more self-worth and tension in the relationship decreases.
Some people tend to be a “people pleaser.” This can negatively impact relationships because people tend to grow resentful over time that their needs are not being met. Passive people have difficulty saying no when their partner asks them to do something. They sometimes might really not want to do something but are afraid that saying no might make someone mad. This tends to be a pattern outside of the relationship as well. They might always do whatever friends ask them to do or tend to provide favors to people. They often feel dependent on others to help them get their needs met.
Other people tend to be aggressive to ensure that their needs are met. This can cause their partner to feel resentful. Although aggressive behaviors might result in getting needs met in the short term, it often causes more problems in the long term. Acts of aggression might include yelling, making threats, or bullying people. Extreme forms of aggression involve physical violence.
Passive-aggressive people tend to have difficulty expressing their feelings and their needs. They may do what is asked of them but complain about it while doing it. They also might agree outwardly to do something to avoid conflict but then make an excuse as to why they cannot complete the task. For example, someone might agree to do a presentation at a meeting but then call in sick that day to avoid actually having to give the presentation. Passive-aggressive behaviors rarely result in people feeling satisfied.
If you have difficulty effectively identifying your feelings and communicating them with your partner, consider trying to assert yourself. Learning how to say no can be very helpful to relationships. Consider seeking professional help with communication and conflict resolution. It is likely to improve many aspects of your life, including your marriage.